April 27, 2021
Primer: Recent Health Care Transparency Initiatives
Policies to increase transparency around health care costs have become increasingly popular on both sides of the aisle in recent years. The Trump Administration issued major rules on health care transparency, and the Biden Administration seems likely to continue these policies or even expand them. In a new primer, AAF’s Director of Health Care Policy Christopher Holt and Ashley Brooks explain the most prominent actions on transparency that the Trump Administration took and outline the available evidence around their impact and some objections that have been raised.
Their central points:
- While the Biden Administration has touted its efforts to roll back Trump-era policies, it appears aligned with the previous administration’s efforts to boost transparency in the health care sector, and specifically for hospitals, insurers, and drug prices;
- Advocates for these rules argue that they will empower patients and constrain health care costs by increasing competition and exposing profiteering, while critics contend transparency will do little to aid patients already constrained by insurer networks and will encourage consolidation; and
- It is too early to determine whether the Trump Administrations actions will have the cost-containing impact advocates predict or will instead disrupt health care markets and lead to consolidation as opponents argue.